7 07-03-87 03:26 ped (adding dropped word in 3rd graf; correcting 10th graf) WHEELING, W.V
7 07-03-87 03:26 ped
(adding dropped word in 3rd graf; correcting 10th graf)
WHEELING, W.Va. (UPI) _ A Hare Krishna devotee and West Virginia
Corrections Commissioner A.V. Doddrill Jr. next week will ask a circuit
judge to accept an agreement concerning religious expression at the
The agreement was reached on a suit filed in Ohio County Circuit
Court by Krishna follower and convicted murderer Thomas Drescher, who
charged that Krishna inmates at the Moundsville prison were denied
Barbara Baxter, Drescher's attorney, said this week that her client
and Dodrill have agreed to a compromise.
As part of that compromise, the approximately 30 Krishna devotees
can eat vegetarian meals prepared by one of their number and have access
to the penitentiary chapel to conduct religious services, she said. The
followers would be permitted to wear religious dress at services.
Devotees would be recognized as members of the Hare Krishna faith
by the Department of Corrections, Baxter said.
However, under the terms of the agreement, Krishna members would
not be allowed to wear or carry religious beads or earrings. They would
not be permitted to refuse haircuts during time periods mandated by the
Both items originally were part of Drescher's complaint.
Baxter said the agreement was reached while the parties were
waiting for Ohio County Circuit Judge Craig Broadwater to finish an
unrelated case. She said an order explaining the agreement will be sent
to Broadwater next week.
Drescher was convicted in January of killing Krishna devotee
Charles Saint Denis. He is currently involved in an extradition
procedure with California, where he is accused of killing Krishna
dissident Steve Bryant in May 1986.
Drescher, who is serving a life sentence for Saint Denis' death,
this week accused Marshall County Sheriff Donald Bordenkircher in a
lawsuit of mistreating Drescher during a stay in the county jail.
Drescher is asking a federal court to dismiss the murder charge
against him and award him $50 million.
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank